No. #126

Pseudocertainty Effect
- False Sense of Security in Phases

The pseudocertainty effect occurs when people perceive an outcome as certain when it is actually subject to chance, particularly in multi-stage decisions. This bias can affect how users make decisions under risk, especially in staged processes like completing tasks in a productivity app or making purchasing decisions in stages.

Read more on Wikipedia

Product example

Users might feel a false sense of security after completing the first stage of a multi-part process, underestimating the risks or challenges in subsequent stages.

Empathy tips


Segment Decision Stages Clearly

Clearly delineate stages in processes to help users understand where they are in the decision-making process.


Highlight Risks at Each Stage

Explicitly highlight the risks or uncertainties at each stage of a process.


User Education on Risk Perception

Educate users on how their perception of risk can change through different stages of a process and the importance of maintaining awareness.


Feedback Loops for Decision Making

Create feedback loops that provide users with information on the outcomes of their decisions at each stage, encouraging more informed decision-making.

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